The Ravens’ Call.

I have been a bit absent from blogging due to the good weather and the need to get the land and house a bit more sorted before it gets toooo hot. I am also researching aspects of nature in Sweden and Norway for part of my novel. This has been fascinating.
Spring has started here and there are lots of bluebells out on the Finca. I will post soon on the wild flowers too.

There was a wonderful prompt from Dverse poets based on collective terms for birds e.g. a murmuration of starlings. There has been some striking and original poetry based on this and worth visiting the different posts on Mr.Linky for that post. As I missed it I will try Open link night for the one I wrote last week. This is another opportunity to discover lots of innovative poetry.

Recently Becky from Hidden Delights of the Algarve posted photographs of large groups of Avocets. The group name is ‘an orchestra of Avocets’. We recently saw a large group of ravens fly over our roof at Navasola. Usually there is a pair that flies but one evening I was called out to see a very large number together. On reading the term for this ‘an unkindness of Ravens’ on the Dverse prompts I didn’t think it was quite fair!

The Call of the Raven

Once I measured my life with sonic booms
Each day at 6 the great white bird
From Manhattan to Heathrow flew.
We heard, we looked, we never knew
There could ever be
A nevermore of Concordes.

Now I measure my life with the Ravens’ call.
Often about the time when night does fall,
Two fly over the roof towards the West.
To roost perhaps, to find some rest.
Lifelong mates speak together.
A chattercroak of Ravens

Once there were much louder cries.
So high above in fading skies,
20 to 30 together they flew
We looked above but never knew,
The name to call them.
An unkindness of Ravens.

Can such birds be more unkind than human kind?
Can talk, use tools, and a loyal mate they find.
They do not kill but pick at death,
To clean the earth from rotting flesh.
Unkindness seems unkind for clearing mess.
A cleansing of Ravens!

Where that great flock of ravens went
And why so many in such numbers spent
The early evening time together.
We will never know for sure.
Do such birds fear changing weather?
A warning of Ravens.

A pair are kept within Old London’s tower
Must never leave as there is fear
Of a fallen King and loss of power.
A kind old Raven sheds a tear.
For human heads upon a spear.
A kingdom of Ravens may be more fair.

Thanks to Dverse poets, yet again for inspiration and to TS Eliot whose Mr Prufock ‘measured out his life in coffee spoons’ I feel fortunate to be able to measure mine with birds and not aeroplanes these days.( although just recently tins of paint too!)



(photo courtesy of Wikicommons and taken at the Tower of London, UK)
bl 1London_tower_ravens

35 thoughts on “The Ravens’ Call.”

  1. I’ve always been intrigued by the collective names for birds, like in a “murder of crows”. Now that you bring up the case of the ravens, too, I feel like doing some research to see where the names come from.

    I love the outrage your speaker voices. And the fact that she speaks for the ravens’ kindness.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I like the: A chattercroak of Ravens, and kingdom of ravens ~ I find it interesting that: A pair are kept within Old London’s tower ~

    I am glad you enjoyed that prompt and I am keeping the links in that post for future writing ~ Thanks for sharing at OLN ~

    Liked by 2 people

  3. You’ve really paid tribute to these interesting creatures and I love how you ended each stanza with a new collective term. A “chattercroak of ravens”….that one will stick with me for awhile. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I enjoyed your poem and as Ravens have a repertoire of 30-40 calls, which may be interpreted as a language, they might enjoy it too! I have another collective noun for you that I remember ‘ a Conspiracy of Ravens’, not sure if that is good or bad!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Love your poem.

    The collective noun for Raven I know is a ‘Mischief of Raven’

    We are lucky to have a pair breeding most years in trees surrounding the ruins of an Iron Age Hillfort that dominates the view from our kitchen window.

    Also not far from home in Newborough Forest, Anglesey, is the biggest Raven roost in Britain which at one time was the second largest in the world. Some 2000 birds at one time. That’s Awesome.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s interesting and didn’t come across that one! There is a raven roost some miles from here near a castle and we think the ones we see fly over in the evening to return there. Such intelligent birds too but I hear they can become dangerous to young livestock and I read about some problems in Sweden. Sounds like you have a lovely view.

      Liked by 1 person

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